by Allie Pape - 10 Reviews - 45 List
San Francisco may not be one of the nation's fashion capitals, but what we lack in high style, we more than make up for with interesting and unusual local designers and stores. These five top San Francisco shops yield treasures that surprise and delight, whether you're buying for yourself or trying to pick the perfect holiday gift. (Photo: Qoio, by Tatiana Jimenez)
Updated: November 14, 2011
San Franciscans from every walk of life appreciate local designer Priya Saraswati's affordable, inventive and work-friendly women's clothing. Designed and sewn right in San Francisco, Saraswati's duds are always au courant--and she's on site to help you pick the best look for your body type.
Fresh and funky hats for men, women and kids are the focus at this hip SOMA milliner, which has been topping heads since 1949. Whether you're searching for a vintage-style cloche, a perfect fedora, or a cool ball cap, Goorin's got you covered--and for American-made classics, prices aren't outrageous.
Local ladies drool over Gilbertina Guarini's gorgeous jewelry, which incorporates natural stones such as quartz and coral into stunning statement pieces. A creation from her Noe Valley boutique will likely set you back $200 to $300, but it's worth its weight in accrued compliments.
This fun gift shop is filled to the brim with tchotchkes, kitchen tools, cards, trinkets and San Francisco souvenirs, making it the perfect stop for a last-minute birthday or Secret Santa exchange. Best of all, 100 percent of the shop's proceeds go to AIDS charities--and every member of the sweet-natured staff is a volunteer.
The next time you slip on your favorite dungarees, spare a thought for San Francisco, home of jeans inventor Levi Strauss. While you can find duds with his name at every mall in the nation, the sprawling Levi's flagship store in Union Square offers rare collections and some fun insight into the brand, which is designed, merchandised and sold right in the middle of downtown San Francisco.